[twitter]Parenting is one big corn maze. So many ways to get out, and so many decisions to make to get there.
“I worry if I’m going to be a good dad. I worry if I’m teaching my child enough. I worry about raising decent children and living long enough to celebrate life with them. I worry about every single decision.”
I asked some friends if they’re a parent who worries and the list started with the above and just kept going. We worry about everything. And it’s not just about our kids, we worry about ourselves too.
I worry too, but maybe it’s more of a wonder. I don’t necessarily stress about how my kids are being raised and doing with life, but I wonder about it all the time. I measure everything, I am constantly taking stock and thinking about their progress and if I’m doing good enough by my boys.
I wonder if I’m giving my kids enough activity options to find their muse. I wonder if I’m reading to them enough. I wonder if the quality time I spend with them is quality enough. I wonder if I’m saving enough for their future, if I’m earning enough to take care of their present, and if I’m looking after myself to live long enough to see it all unfold.
My wonder extends to measuring too. I see how you other parents are with your kids, and I compare how I am with mine. I see your status updates about the things you’re doing with your kids, how they’re excelling, and I compare if my kids are good enough.
And then I start wondering.
Why aren’t my sons playing hockey, taking piano, or programming computers? Yes they take art class, and dance, and swimming, but did I miss something by not getting them in baseball, skiing, or lacrosse?
I wonder if my kids are okay. I wonder if they’re confident enough. I wonder if they have enough friends, if they’re a good friend. I wonder if they’re happy.
I know you wonder and worry about the same things most parents seem to wonder and worry about. Everything. And guess what? As much as I want to be laissez-faire free-range parent and put my feet up, the wonder and worry is a good thing.
The worry if we’re doing good enough is a sign that, in fact, we ARE doing good enough. If you’re not worrying about your kids, if you’re not wondering if you’re doing it right well .. then .. what does that say?
The fact we stress, we wonder, we wish, we hope, we second guess is a sign of caring. The fact that we stress about all those things is the sign that YES, I’M A GOOD PARENT/FRIEND/RELATIVE.
If you care, if you question, if you worry, if you compare, if you wonder, it means you’re doing it right. You’re doin’ good. Really, you are.
To worry means you’re not satisfied with where things are, and you want to try harder to make it better. While we could all use to dial down the worry and the wonder, the fact that it is there means we care.
Check out this new video from my partner Minute Maid. Share it with the friends and family in your life who could use a reminder that they, too, are doing a great job as a parent.
Now tell me about a parent who worries that you know.
Post a shout out/short story about her in the comment section below to let them know she’s doing a better job as a parent than she might think. With the comment you’ll have a chance to win a Minute Maid prize pack, which includes a $250 Visa gift card to help her to continue #DoinGood work for her family. Happy posting!
(Don’t worry, Dads – I will be running a similar campaign for Father’s Day.)
And rookie parents? You need to know that while time cures the worry and wonder, it also changes it. I look back on those early stresses about food and sleep patterns and potty training and, in the big picture, it didn’t matter.
Now it’s reading, and school, and socializing. In a few years it will be peer pressure, and more school. The worry and wonder will never go away. So take time in your present to look back at your past, and realize that you’re #doingood for your kids’ future.
Disclaimer: This prize will be provided by Minute Maid. Minute Maid is not a sponsor, administrator or connected in any other way with the contest – and all opinions are my own. Please use a genuine social media account for entry, not a generic contest account. This branded content appears in exchange for a donation to Team Diabetes Canada.